Special Program Focus
Responding to community demands, the Department of Social Work developed a master's program with an emphasis on service in rural environments. The MSW program was admitted to candidacy for accreditation by the Council on Social Work Education in February, 1999 and has been fully accredited since 2002. The primary purpose of the program is to graduate clinical social workers who have the knowledge and skills for advanced practice in rural environments to improve the well-being of individuals, families, groups, organizations and communities.
This MSW program is a competency-based program with 45 practice behaviors at the foundation level and 43 practice behaviors at the advanced level. The ten social work competencies promulgated by the Council on Social Work Education (2008) are as follows:
The MSW program has four options:
The three-year part time option applicants may choose to take the first half of the MSW program over two part-time years rather than a single, full-time year. This option involves enrolling in field during years two and three. In the four-year part time option, applicants may spread the program out into four years of study, with years two and three requiring enrollment in the field. The MSW degree must be completed within four years of enrollment.
The Advanced Standing Program is an accelerated curriculum option available only to highly qualified graduates of baccalaureate social work programs accredited by the Council on Social Work Education (CSWE). Consideration is given only to those undergraduate social work graduates with superior academic standing and exceptional references.
Applicants seeking Advanced Standing admission must meet all the admissions criteria required for standard admission. In addition, Advanced Standing applicants must:
Students admitted to the Advanced Standing program will be expected to engage in the field placement process during the spring semester prior to their program enrollment.
The program has no thesis requirement and no comprehensive examination. Students do conduct a two-semester, Institutional Review Board-approved research study and participate in supervised field internships.